6.9/10
36,476
220 user 106 critic

The Towering Inferno (1974)

Trailer
2:12 | Trailer
At the opening party of a colossal, but poorly constructed, office building, a massive fire breaks out that threatens to destroy the tower and everyone in it.

Director:

John Guillermin

Writers:

Richard Martin Stern (novel), Thomas N. Scortia (novel) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Popularity
4,456 ( 650)
Won 3 Oscars. Another 9 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Steve McQueen ... Chief O'Halloran
Paul Newman ... Doug Roberts
William Holden ... Jim Duncan
Faye Dunaway ... Susan
Fred Astaire ... Harlee Claiborne
Susan Blakely ... Patty
Richard Chamberlain ... Simmons
Jennifer Jones ... Lisolette
O.J. Simpson ... Jernigan
Robert Vaughn ... Senator Parker
Robert Wagner ... Dan Bigelow
Susan Flannery ... Lorrie
Sheila Allen ... Paula Ramsay (as Sheila Mathews)
Norman Burton ... Giddings (as Normann Burton)
Jack Collins ... Mayor Ramsay
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Storyline

Doug Roberts, Architect, returns from a long vacation to find work nearly completed on his skyscraper. He goes to the party that night concerned he's found that his wiring specifications have not been followed and that the building continues to develop short circuits. When the fire begins, Michael O'Halleran is the chief on duty as a series of daring rescues punctuate the terror of a building too tall to have a fire successfully fought from the ground. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

One Tiny Spark Becomes A Night Of Blazing Suspense. See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 January 1975 (Singapore) See more »

Also Known As:

The Towering Inferno See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$14,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$116,000,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$116,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)| 4-Track Stereo (Japan theatrical release)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35:1 (35mm) 2.2:1(70mm)
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The only Best Picture Oscar nominee that year not to be nominated in any of the writing categories. See more »

Goofs

Mr. Duncan says of his building that he has the latest and greatest fire prevention devices in effect, which is flat-out lie, because if he were right the sprinklers would have automatically been set off by the fire on the 81st floor and the Fire Department would have been notified automatically according to building and fire codes, even at the time the movie was made (1974). See more »

Quotes

James Duncan: [showing Senator Parker a rare case of vintage wine] That's all you're going to drink tonight!
Senator Parker: The whole case?
See more »

Crazy Credits

The 20th Century Fox and Warner Bros. Pictures logos don't appear in the beginning. See more »

Alternate Versions

The film was re-dubbed in 2003 for the German DVD release. All subsequent releases on DVD and Blu-ray feature this new dubbing, many TV airings as well. See more »


Soundtracks

The Morning After
(uncredited)
Written by Al Kasha and Joel Hirschhorn
Played at the party when Roberts is first reporting the fire to Duncan
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Great disaster movie!
10 July 2017 | by HotToastyRagSee all my reviews

Steve McQueen and Paul Newman are in a movie together, and it's not a racecar movie? Well, in the 1970s, it was a big fad to make big-budget disaster movies with a large cast. The Poseidon Adventure, Earthquake, and the Airport movies make up a classic niche genre, in which The Towering Inferno garners a top spot.

This one deals with a burning building, a skyscraper to be exact. Hence, the "towering" inferno. Countless characters are introduced to the audience, given reasons to become attached, and then placed in dire peril. Who will make it out alive? This film's all-star cast includes Steve McQueen, Paul Newman, Fred Astaire, Richard Chamberlain, Jennifer Jones, Faye Dunaway, William Holden, Susan Blakely, O.J. Simpson, Robert Vaughn, and Robert Wagner. Fred Astaire received his only Oscar nomination for this movie, which is the only reason why I watched it. I tend to scare easily, so disaster movies aren't my genre of choice. If you like them, this one is really good. Lots of tension, great special effects (for 1974), heart wrenching drama, and excitement up until the very end!


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